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Proposal Details

Proposal ID832
Proposal2016 Platform Amendment Proposal Water
PresenterPlatform Committee Sponsored by the Green Party of California
Floor ManagerJan Martell
PhaseClosed
Discussion05/16/2016 - 06/12/2016
Voting06/13/2016 - 06/19/2016
ResultAdopted
Presens Quorum32 0.6666
Consens Quorum56 0.6666 of Yes and No Votes

Background

This proposal would amend Chapter III, Ecological Sustainability, Section H. Water
It was recently updated in the GPCA Platform with the following background and purpose.

Water is essential to all forms of life. Water is a basic human need and a requirement for all forms of life. It is the responsibility of government to assure a clean, safe supply of drinking water to every California resident. Our existing surface and groundwater must be protected from pollution by agricultural and industrial wastes as well as runoff from our homes and roadways.
 
Cycles of intense drought and flooding demonstrated the need to reorient our priorities in order to achieve a truly sustainable water policy. Over-development and poor planning have resulted in increasing rain-impermeable areas, which then compound the severity and frequency of flooding and pollution in regions downstream.

We must understand and apply a holistic "watershed approach" to managing our state's water resources. The principle of bioregionalism - living within the means of a region's natural resources - should give direction to future water policies. Current expenditures do not address regional depletions of groundwater, and they minimize the real costs of research and development to assure adequate supply. Regional water budgets for user water allocations and public welfare statements that define regional water use priorities need to be accountable to the public.

Conservation (reduce, reuse, recycle) must be an essential part of any water policy. Water conservation also reduces energy consumption and pollution. Attention to climate change requires conservation/recycling/management strategies.

Pricing mechanisms that encourage conservation and re-use must be developed to establish consistency and fairness to all users. Bloc pricing can provide a means of increasing costs to larger users. This, in turn, creates new funds for research and development to decrease demand or increase supply of adequate water.

Proposal

To Amend Chapter III, Ecological Sustainability, Section H. Water as follows:

ADD to GPUS Water Plank:

• Implement strong laws to promote conservation, reclaim polluted water systems, develop water-supply restrictions, ban toxics and pesticide dumping, control corporate farming, and bring the rule of law to trans-state and trans-national operations that pollute water systems

• Use an ecosystems/watershed approach to ensure responsible water use. All stakeholders need to participate in the planning. Environmental justice, ecological impact, and depletion of groundwater supplies need to be integrated with the ongoing process for approval of new withdrawals

• Achieve a truly sustainable water policy in the light of climate change considering, for example, snow packs, aquifer recharge, rising sea levels, and available water supplies

• Oppose the disproportional political influences of the petroleum, corporate agriculture, mining, timber, real estate and development industries, while working to support family farms, open space, the protection of water quality in our rivers, conservation of watersheds, and the sustainable use and preservation of healthy forest

• Integrate land use with water use for urban planning decisions. Political bodies, such as municipal water authorities, need to be more inclusive in the representation of users, hydrologists, environmental health professionals, and environmental advocates in the region and address the issues affecting the regional supply and demand of the resource, as well as water quality. Presently, the interests and concerns of real estate and development interests have a disproportionate voice in new allocations

REPLACE 4.h. Promote passive and natural systems, such as wetlands, for water and wastewater treatment where appropriate

WITH Promote and maintain passive and natural systems (such as wetlands) for water and wastewater treatment where appropriate, and enforce regulations against dumping of pollutants through regional Water Quality Control Boards

REPLACE:5. Chemicals used in the fluoridation of America's public drinking water supplies are toxic waste byproducts. The majority of these toxic wastes come from the phosphate fertilizer industry. Fluoride accumulates in the human body through ingestion and inhalation. A growing body of research suggests that fluoride may be associated with arthritis, hip fractures, bone cancer, kidney damage, infertility, and brain disorders. For these reasons, the Green Party opposes the fluoridation of drinking water.

WITH Set health and sustainability water quality guidelines for drinking water supported by the peer-reviewed scientific literature. Regulations are needed or need improvement, for example, for arsenic, bacteria, viruses, protozoa, fluoridation chemical species such as fluoride and fluorosilicate, water disinfection by-products, environmental estrogens, and pharmaceuticals (medicines)

Resources

Approval of this proposal will amend the 2016 Draft Platform, to be presented for approval at the 2016 Presidential Nominating Convention.

References

CONTACT:
Platform Committee
Bruce Hinkforth, co-chair, bhinkforth@milwpc.com, 262-569-1370
Budd Dickinson, co-chair, budd.dickinson@gmail.com, 650-773-0438
Peggy Koteen, GPCA contact, pkoteen@aol.com

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